72 internautes sur 74 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
- Publié sur Amazon.com
OF POSEIDON is one of those mermaid books that are populating the shelves in the year 2012. I have always been a fan of mermaid lore - they are secretive, alluring beings that exist in a world that humans can't venture into - so I eagerly dove into this one. But almost from the get-go, there were just little things about this book that bothered me, and at times made reading it a chore. The mystery itself is good enough - Galen is a Syrena prince who hears about a girl who can speak to fish, so he goes looking for her because the ability to do so means she's "of Poseidon", and it was thought that that bloodline had died out. But then he finds her, and, instead of doing something new, this book tumbled headlong into typical YA paranormal fare.
Emma, our narrator, is another of those girls who is friends with the popular girl (who was also a bit too stereotypical African-American for my taste). She doesn't realize that she's pretty. She's clumsy as all get out. And the first time she meets Galen, she literally trips into him, nearly killing herself on his "sculpted" chest. Emma also doesn't realize that she's anything special, or that she has this unbelievable ability. Galen is also your typical paranormal boy: ridiculously good looking, charming, the fastest swimmer ever, and a Syrena prince, plus he assimilates himself seamlessly into the human world, even though at the start of the book the author tries to make us believe that Galen has a hard time holding conversations with others, and admittedly, he did struggle. You know, for the first chapter or so. He's also unbelievably rich. In other words, there was nothing special about Galen, at least not in my opinion.
Normally I would gobble up all the talk of the mythology that the author is using, and there were parts of the Syrena background that I loved (particularly the love story between Grom and Nalia). But I found the exposition on the history more like listening to a history professor, in that the facts were sort of just recited, sometimes rather dryly, so what should have been the best part for me also felt lackluster and uninteresting. I also had a problem with the Syrena take on marriage - marrying only to mate, not out of love - and the rather medieval look at women and their roles. Galen spends much of the time demanding that Emma listen to him because he's royalty, and she - in typical female human form - does the total opposite, and includes some tantrums as well. Then you had the whole rather icky relationship between Rayna and Toraf, in which they were mated without her knowledge or consent. I don't care if she really did care for him all along, he shouldn't have been able to get her eldest brother's consent without her own involvement in the discussion.
Couple that with my annoyance with some of the phrases Emma uses throughout the book - like "ohmysweetgoodness" or "fan-freaking-tastic" - and my irritation was a constant presence. I also had trouble with Galen at the start; I think the reader is supposed to find him charming from the get-go, and maybe some people do, but I found him to be a liar and a manipulator for much of this book, until he's finally forced to tell Emma the truth thanks to Rayna's intervention (from this point on, I didn't mind him as much, and he actually started to grow on me a bit). Their whole relationship just really didn't sit right with me, because Galen was not being entirely truthful with her, but Emma was just eating up all of his attention. We also have another instance of insta-love, and I get that there are hints dropped as to why that is, but it was still yet another thing that made this feel like your typical YA paranormal. I do give the author credit, though, for not having Emma and Galen dive into any physical shenanigans straight away. It took 70% before we even saw them kiss, owing entirely to Galen's back-and-forth in his own mind (in which he was trying to do the right thing), so kudos for that.
"If stupid were a disease, I'd have died from it by now." (36%)
I don't really want to call Emma stupid, because I'm not sure that you can really put this on her. She's relying on Galen to tell her what's going on, why she can talk to fish, etc., and he's not telling her the whole truth. But she feels used by him, and tries to do the same with him except that it doesn't work, because she likes him too much, and can't help but be swept up whenever he looks at her, or smiles at her, or teases her. I have a problem when a guy's favorite thing to do is make the girl blush, you know? And boy, does Emma spend a lot of time doing that in this book. I also had a problem with how quickly Emma forgets about Chloe once she realizes what she is and starts spending all her time with Galen and Rayna. Considering the knockdown, drag-out brawl that ensued when Rayna brought Chloe up, plus the fact that Emma's entire existence prior to Galen rotated around Chloe, this was a little hard for me to believe, especially when Emma starts off the book lamenting the fact that everyone else at the school would probably forget her.
This book also ends in a most inopportune place. I get it - we're being set up for the second book - but this book sort of has this massive reveal and then BAM we're at the end. I'd seen enough people's reactions, though, to expect it, so I wasn't quite as upset as some readers have been with the abrupt ending. Still, not a whole lot is resolved in this book, and I have a problem with a book that didn't seem to have much of a point aside from setting up for the next one.
If you're reading this and thinking that I must have hated this book, I really didn't. I don't think there's anything absolutely spectacular about it, but there were certain aspects that I did enjoy. OF POSEIDON has an interesting plot, and I am curious about what comes next, and what the big reveal at the end will mean for the Syrena, and Galen and Emma specifically. I'll just make sure I go into it with more tempered expectations.
An e-galley was provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Quote taken from an uncorrected proof.
25 internautes sur 30 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
- Publié sur Amazon.com
** spoiler alert ** It's official. Mermaids are the new "angels" of the Paranormal Romance genre. The is the second mermaid book I've read and I'm less than impressed with these sea creatures. Incidentally, Of Poseidon happens to be worse for me than Lies Beneath.
Of Poseidon tells the story of Emma, a girl who possesses a few Syrena (mermaid) traits, and Galen, a Syrena prince, who attempts to unravel the secrets of Emma. It's discovered that she has the Gift of Poseidon (think Dr. Dolittle at the aquarium) and that she may be the key to pass on the Gift to future generations. The problem arises that Emma can't change into her Syrena form causing Galen to spend more time with her training her. You know what happens next: they fall deeply in love.
I was really looking forward to starting this book for two reasons: 1) The cover is stunning and 2) The blurb mentioned it was a mermaid tale told by both Emma and Galen's PoV. I usually like books that feature duel point of views, but in this case I didn't because it switched back and forth from 1st person (Emma) to 3rd person (Galen). That stylistic choice felt choppy to me. But despite that, I did find the dialogue humorous at times.
"Maybe you can talk to donkeys, too," Dr. Milligan smiles. Emma nods. "I can. Sometimes Galen can be a jackass."
And that's about all I liked about this book. (See, I'm not that heartless!) Unfortunately, the bad REALLY outweighed any good this novel had and it all started with Chloe, Emma's best friend. Now the beginning of the novel opens up with Emma and Chloe in Florida on vacation before school starts and I was surprised to see that Chloe was black. I had a huge smile on my face and I thought, "Wow! Diversity!" That was until Chloe was described as having a weave and fake nails... and she dies in the 3rd chapter. D: The smile slid of my face and my happy cat died. I have a HUGE issue with how African Americans are portrayed in YA novels, if we even make it into a YA novel in the first place. This is the same issue I had with The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer, where they minority character was so heavily stereotyped I wanted him to die a slow painful death. Same with Chloe, whose only purpose was to create a sad and lonely heroine. Are there black girls who have weaves and wear fake nails? Sure. But that is the easiest cop out when it comes to creating a black female character. I half expected her to bust out and start "doin' the Dougie" on the beach.
Chloe wasn't the only character I had issue with. I also really disliked Galen. He's your typical YA male love interest. He's so good looking it hurts to glance at him, females tripping over their panties to give him their numbers, and if he smiles at you: instant orgasm. He was also a controlling douche bag slinging Emma around like she was a Raggedy Anne doll. He always tries to tell Emma what to do and where to go, giving her no choice. There is even a point where he tells her she is going with him to Florida and he already arranged everything including getting permission from her mother. He stalks her and threatens another guy she dates. And I was okay with giving this book 2 stars until he started thinking thoughts like these:
"He scours his memory for a sweet-natured Syrena who would take care of him, who would do whatever he asked, who would never argue with him."
But I really can't expect much for him given how poorly females are treated in this book. I'm not sure what the obsession is with women's uteruses these days. Please don't get me started on the US, but this is YA fiction. Can't I escape the madness in my fiction? No, apparently not. The female mermaids have almost no choice who they want to marry. When a male Syrena turns 18 he searches for a female "whose company he will enjoy and who will be suitable for producing offspring." Great. Just great. So, female Syrena are only worthy if they can produce offspring. Here that girls? Your worth is dependent on a working uterus! Otherwise you are unsuitable!
Galen's own sister, Rayna, spends half of the book angy because she was married off to a Syrena without her knowledge. Yes, that's right. She wasn't even present at the ceremony! Oh, but don't worry she had the option to break off the marriage. Unfortunately for her, the King would probably deny her, so no real rights at all! But what really irked me was when she saw him kiss another girl, she instantly decides she does love him and they go off to an island to mate. -_-
Emma is no exception to this "rule" either. Since she is so speshul and has the Gift of Poseidon, she is destined to marry Galen's brother and produce offspring. Galen conveniently keeps this from her the entire book because she really has no say in the matter. Women's rights over their marital status? Their bodies? Their children? Their futures? What's that?
Along with the issue of women, the book has a ton of other problems. For example, somehow Emma can talk underwater while she is holding her breath. That makes no sense. She has to hold her breath. How is it possible that she is talking? Emma's mother was also a strange one. She is crazy overbearing and pesters Emma into admitting Emma and Galen are dating. But here is the thing: they weren't. She's very, very strict, but just allows Emma to go anywhere with Galen. That didn't match up for me. I would tell you why it makes zero sense, but it would spoil the entire book. Speaking of which, the plot twists are extremely predictable. I knew how the book would end in the second chapter. There's no anticipation, no mystery. Just incredibly slow characters. That is pathetic.
I was really looking forward to this book and was excited to get approved for the galley, but another mermaid tale bites the dust.
1 star for an interesting premise.
.5 star for the lulz it afforded me.
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